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Home Improvement - Back Yard Pond Solar Powered

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March 20, 2022

The waterfall no longer is leaking out the side.

Little birds keep stopping by to get a little drink.

There is still a leak where the liner ends at the back corner of the waterfall. gota get more silicone.

An overhead view

The view from the pit BBQ. Much nicer than looking at grass.

March 23, 2020

A nice night view

contractors returned and sealed up the inside of the bog filter. I guess they just didn't understand and placed the manifolds on top

of the gravel instead of under it.

Fishy hiding shelf.

March 29, 2020

The bog is still leaking. The water is getting behind the flagstone and running over the edge of the liner.

The solution is to cement the inside of the bog completely. Tomorrow they will apply the finish coat

and in a few days coat it with a fish safe liquid rubber.

March 30, 2022

The skim coat was placed over the rough cement (not pictured). The next day it was covered in fish save liquid rubber to just over the waterline.

This should seal it for good.

They came back at the end of the day and refilled the gravel.

This time the cleanout bucket and manifods were placed at the bottom of the bog.

April 1, 2022

The moss I ordered arrived today. Hopefully it will thrive in the pond.

It's getting there.

I used a clear liquid rubber 1 inch below the black liquid rubber on up.

I also coated it heavy whereever the water would touch.

I have ehough to coer all the flagstone at some point.

My wife replanted all the plants and some of the moss.

I will let the clear liquid rubber cure overnight and fill the bog up tomorrow.

April 2, 2022

I filled the bog up with water and let it sit for a couple hours. Yay no more leaks.

The I fired up the pumps and let it start working. I started planting the plants into the gravel.

May 29, 2022 I did what I did not want to do and cut out one of the large flagstones so I could see where I needed to fix the constant leak.

I found it right away. Hopefullly this will end this chapter. I could not see this with the flagstone in place.

I gave up on the leaks and it will all be cemented in. There will also be a few more changes.

It is all cemented in. Next up waterproofing.

I was worried enough with this two part cementing that I took a picture. Sure enough it is leaking here. A worker slapped grout on the crack but it leaked badly.

It looked good for one night but it leaked 1 inch per hour to the crack described above then slowed down until it reached the lights. A bunch of time and money wasted.

The contractor was hospitalised so the fix will be delayed.

OK he was back and kept pulling a few flagstone at a time and the issue was not resolved. I had him remove all the flagstone and we found the source of the leak.

More liquid rubber was applied in two coats to the area and the whole sides.

6 hours after filling it up the water is still touching the tape mark I placed at the water level.

I will let it sit for 48 hours and if good will drain it and have the flagstone re-installed.

July 5, 2020 (two years ago)

This is when I first started planning and testing what was to come.

I have wanted to install a medium size pond in my back yard for years. In 2002 my brother and I dug out a pond but it never got past that.

It was eventually filled in.

In the years since I have wanted one. We have done a lot to renovate our yard which looks amazing but with cement and flagstone now completely

surrounding our house it is now pretty much impossible to run electricity to install a working pond.

That is until I decided damn it I will make a solar pond. I started thinking small but as I kept searching I kept buying more solar things to make it work.

I plan on about a 1100 gallon pond with a waterfall and a 500 gallon bog (biological filter with plants) to help keep it clean.

It will be 2 feet deep max to avoid having to get it permitted.

Pond 7' x 11' x 2' deep
Waterfall 40" drop
Biological filter area 8' x 8' x 1.5' deep

It will have matching Arizona Gold flagstone and varying sized boulders along the top and in the waterfall.

The bog will sit along side the waterfall and pour into the pond.

Parts List

Testing faze Before the digging begins.

This is just the start. I will add pictures of the products and the build as it gets started.

Testing one of the two 660 GPH 12V pumps off a solar panel.

Testing both 660 GPH 12V pumps 36" drop

Testing both pumps 42" drop

Two additional 240GPH 12V pumps. This is one running. These are for the bog filter.

Working on a Skimmer box. There will be one for each of the pumps. This will collect floating leaves and debrit and protect the pumps.

This is a work in progress. Testing in my dogs pool.

I will make a better one.

The basket is too large, I ordered smaller,stronger spa skimmer baskets. I need room to add a filter matt between the leaf catcher and the pump.

I will route the electric cable and pump hose on the side after I build the new basket case.

I need more room for filter material before the pump. The rocks are holding the plastic from floating away.

I tested it today to make sure that the pump would not pull the water out faster than it would flow in and that wasn't a problem.

I sat out there for 30 minutes listening to the sound of the water falling into my dogs kiddie pool.


The skimmer box 1 is getting closer to being completed. It starts with water input with a leaf catching basket. It will have a bag to contain the leaf litter.

Below will be bio blox for benifical bacteria growing space. It will flow thru a filter into the pumps. A 660 GPH pump and a 240GPH pump that will run off a battery and run 24

 hours. There will be two of each of these for the pond. They will sit outside the pond with the liner sandwiched around the hole. All screws, nuts and washers are stainless steel.


I sacrificed a bin to make the liner holder. the liner will sandwich between the two pieces with silicone to seal it.

It needs a little cleanup but fits nicely. I used all stainless steel screws, locknuts and washers.

The second one didn't take nearly as long to complete.

After a lot of changes there will be two solar panels each with a seperate charger/controller. From there I will have 100AH and 150AH marine batteries.

The 150AH battery will go to a fuse block and a timer for the two 660GPH pumps for the waterfall.

The 100AH battery will go to a fuse block and run the two 240GPH pumps for the bog filter as well as a timer for the lights.

Like the picture below but updated for the current useage.


The Dual 100W 18V panels were joined together with aluminum Angle. I removed an old sattelite dish from my chimney and it will make a perfect

 mount to install on a metal pole. It will allow me to place it at any angle I need.

Running everything

After calculating the power requirement I can run all four pumps and lights off the battery but it will require another 100W solar panel to charge it up.

I started testing the pumps and two lights in my dogs pool.

5pm still light except gray skys from the local fires. Battery 14.62V

8pm Dark for over an hour. Battery 14.60V

11pm Still going strong. Battery 14.5V It should run all night.

12:30am Battery 14.49V Results are going great.

This worked great in the summer sun but not as well in the winter. See above for the changes.

Pond Liners

45mil 10 x 10
45mil 5 x 15
45mil 15 x 15


15 x 20

10 x 10


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